Will a new bill being discussed in the Philippines House of Representatives finally end late night karaoke sessions in the Philippines? Anyone that have lived in the archipelago has been exposed to extreme noise pollution coming from local fiestas, birthday parties, loudspeakers, karaoke bars, etc. It’s a law that’s been long overdue in the Philippines.
Yes, existing anti-noise pollution laws – such as the Philippine Environmental Code (Presidential Decree No. 1152) and the National Pollution Control Decree (PD No. 984)[i] are already in place.
However, according to Quezon Rep. Angelina Tan, these laws do not “squarely address President Rodrigo Duterte’s policy pronouncement of enforcing a 10 p.m. ban on videoke/karaoke singing.”
Tan’s House Bill No. 1035 proposes a P1,000 fine, $20 US dollars, or six months imprisonment for those who use videoke machines past 10 p.m.
“It shall be unlawful for any person or business establishment to cause unnecessary disturbance to the public,” the bill stated.
The proposed measure included the use of radio, CD player, television set, amplified musical instruments, drums, loudspeakers, videokes, karaoke systems, and other sound amplifying equipment. Businesses that violate the law may lose their license to operate.
Under House Bill No. 1035 – “An Act Prohibiting the use of Videoke/Karaoke systems and Other Sound Amplifying Equipment that Cause Unnecessary Disturbance to the Public within the Residential Areas, and Providing Penalties Therefore” – the operation of such equipment audible within 50 feet distance from the source should be considered as evidence.
Regardless of the occasion, Tan said individuals or groups would only be allowed to use or operate such equipment from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.
I’m hoping that the phrase “regardless of the occasion” will also cover barangay fiestas.
We have 98 barangays on our island province of Guimaras alone. These fiestas blast music from a wall of loudspeakers until 3:30 to 4:00 am. If you live anywhere near, you’ll be hard-pressed to get any sleep.
If the new law is passed, it remains to be seen if it will actually be enforced.
I’m hoping it will.
[i] Pathricia Ann V. Roxas (2018 March 13) “End is near for annoying late-night videoke sessions if…” Retrieved from Inquirer.net https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/974941/no-more-late-night-videoke-sessions-if-house-bill-becomes-law